“Baseball,” by Michael Franks

I know the phrase “smooth as butter” is incredibly cliché, but that is the only way I can describe the sound of this song.  This is the kind of tune that makes a person want to lean back on the stool at the bar and order a whiskey neat.


Cal Ripken in rap

Today marks twenty-four years since Cal Ripken, Jr. set a new major league record by playing in his 2,131st consecutive baseball game (September 6, 1995), breaking the record previously held by Lou Gehrig.  In honor of the anniversary, the Baltimore Sun published a piece that features clips from a long list of rap songs (over 50 total) that mention Ripken in them.  I don’t often think of rap when I think of baseball, but I suppose when you make a mark like the one Cal made, rappers are going to notice you.

Check out the piece here.

Cal_Ripken,_Jr_in_1996

Cal Ripken, Jr in 1996 (by Joe Shlabotnik)


Walkup songs | Baseball stereotypes

Here’s another round of baseball stereotypes, this time all about the walkup song.  Not only do the song choices seem pretty accurate here, but I really enjoy this guy’s acting as he depicts each of the player characters.


“Take Me Out to the Ball Game,” The Skeletons

This version of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” has me feeling off-balance, even after a few listens, but it’s starting to grow on me.  Sometimes it’s fun to have a wrench thrown into your expectations.


“Panda and the Freak,” The Baseball Project

It’s been a while since I last posted a Baseball Project song, so here’s a fun one about Tim Lincecum and Pablo Sandoval.


“Take Me Out to the Ball Game,” Frank Sinatra and Gene Kelly

This appears to be a clip from a movie sharing the same name as the song, Take Me Out to the Ball Game.  I’ve never seen the movie, but after watching this rendition of the song (not to mention the tap dancing!), I may have to seek out a copy.


“Headfirst Slide Into Cooperstown On A Bad Bet,” by Fall Out Boy

I debated whether or not to post this here, because in spite of its title, the song itself isn’t actually about baseball.  Rather, if you pay attention to the lyrics, you realize the song is about infidelity.

However, the title still grabs your attention if you’re a baseball fan, so I did a little poking around to see what I could find in terms of an explanation.  While there is some uncertainty about the general meaning, the consensus seems to be that the title is a reference to Pete Rose — in fact, some people indicate that Fall Out Boy originally included Rose’s name in the title, then changed their minds to avoid the potential for a lawsuit.  So instead of using his name, the band referenced Rose’s tendency to utilize headfirst slides.

Beyond that, the connection gets a bit hazy, but here’s what I found that makes a modicum of sense: In the song, the narrator is having an affair with a married woman.  He is the other man, if you will.  More than anything, he wants the woman for himself.  However, due to the fact that she is married (his bad bet), he can never have her.  In the same way, Pete Rose has found that he cannot have what he truly wants — a place in Cooperstown — due to his own bad bet.